The transdisciplinary (TD) conference is a cooperation between the GEF Small Grants Programme and the WISIONS Innovation Lab Nepal. The WISIONS Innovation Lab Nepal is a collaborative initiative between Wuppertal Institute, Winrock, PEEDA and RECOFTC that aims at strengthening the livelihoods of mountain populations by applying decentralized renewable energy solutions in combination with sustainable landscape management practices. The Innovation Lab (IL) is a transformative research approach developed by the Wuppertal Institute that seeks to integrate sustainability research into multi-stakeholder processes aiming at catalyzing systemic change. 


What is the transdisciplinary conference about?

The aim of the TD Conference is to facilitate exchange and debate among experts from different disciplines and professional sectors in order to identify the key sustainability challenges facing mountain communities and ecosystems, as well as the favourable opportunities for shaping sustainable futures in mountain landscapes in Nepal. In this way, the conference will also promote collaboration between researchers and practitioners committed to shaping sustainable futures in mountain landscapes in Nepal. As part of the WISIONS Innovation Lab, the conference will provide insightful inputs to guide the further development of the project and explore opportunities to integrate academic research into the project.




In the Radission Hotel Kathmandu. The TD conference will be held exclusively as an in-person event.



Who can participate?

We want to bring together a diverse audience, including representatives from academia, public sector, private sector, and civil society. Registration is free of charge, but places are limited. The places will be assigned in order to ensure diversity of sectors, professions and disciplines among the audience.

We want to provide a space for lively debates and knowledge exchange among different disciplines. Therefore, your active participation is encouraged and valued. 



What have we planned for you?

The TD conference comprises 4 sessions, each of which incorporates 2-3 inputs of experts and a panel discussion.  


8:00 – 8:45 Welcome, registration, breakfast
8:45 – 9:15 Opening salutation

  • Prof. Tri Ratna Bajracharya – Director Center of Energy Studies, Institute of Engineering, Tribhuvan University. (tbc)
  • Mr. Nawa Raj Dhakal – Executive Director Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC)
  • Ms. Apsara Chapagain – Former chairperson of FECOFUN. (tbc)

– Moderator: Madeleine Raabe (Wuppertal Institute)

9:15 – 10:40

Session on Challenges for Sustainable Futures I

Experts’ inputs

  • “Gender and socially inclusive transformative research and action towards sustainable mountain futures” by Gitta Shrestha (Independent researcher)
  • “Agricultural Land-use development” by Dr. Kishor Atreya (Associate Professor of Mountain Environment and Development, Tribhuvan University)
  • “Changing socio-economic dynamics in rural Nepal: Role of caste/ethnicity and gender” by Dr. Mahendra Sapkota (Senior Visiting Faculty member, Tribhuvan University)

Panel discussion and Q&A

– Moderator: Dr. Willington Ortiz (Wuppertal Institute)

10:40 – 11:00 Tee break
11:00 – 12:30

Session on Challenges for Sustainable Futures II

Experts’ inputs

  • “The rural-urban energy access gap today and in Nepal’s long-term strategy for net-zero emissions” by Dr. Amrit Nakarmi (Center for Energy Studies (CES), Tribhuvan University)
  • “Sustainability of community-based micro-hydro plants in Nepal” by Resha Piya (Energy Adviser, Green Growth Group, British Embassy Kathmandu)
  • “Climate vulnerability and resilience of water resources in mountainous regions” by Dr. Dhiraj Pradhananga (Professor, Tribhuvan University)

Panel discussion and Q&A

– Moderator: Madeleine Raabe (Wuppertal Institute)

12:30 – 13:30 Lunch break
13:30 – 15:00 Session on Opportunities for Sustainable Futures I

Experts’ Inputs

  • “Agroforestry practices: lessons from Nepal” by Vivek Dhar Sharma (National Coordinator, GEF-Small Grant Programme, UNDP)
  • “Gender responsive approaches to PUE” (tbc)
  • “Business models for regenerative agriculture farmers” by Menila Kharel (Thematic lead-Sustainable Agriculture and Markets, Practical Action)

Panel discussion and Q&A

– Moderator: Dr. Willington Ortiz (Wuppertal Institute)

15:00 – 15:20 Tee break
15:20 – 16:45 Session on Opportunities for Sustainable Futures II

Experts’ Inputs

  • “Community managed small irrigation systems: Governance and organizational aspects for improving resilient livelihoods” by Arya Sarad Gautam (Team leader, Small Irrigation Program)
  • “Connecting Microhydro plants to the grid. An alternative for strengthening existing community-based (energy) infrastructures and business?” by Satish Gautam (National Programme Manager, Renewable Energy for Rural Livelihood, RERL)
  • “Natural based solutions (NbS) for resilience of water and road infrastructures” by Dr. Sanjaya Devkota (Institute of Himalayan Risk Reduction)

Panel discussion + Q&A round with the audience

– Moderator: Madeleine Raabe (Wuppertal Institute)

16:45 – 17:00 Wrap up & farewell

What is the official language?

The official language of the TD conference is Nepali. Simultaneous translation into English is available for non-Nepali speakers. 



What are the important dates?

  • Deadline of TD conference registration: until 26th September, 2023 (23:59 NPT)
  • The TD conference takes place on October 4th, 2023 (8:30 NPT)